Category Archives: Lowndes County Commission

Miller Bridge Rezoning back as R-A @ GLPC 2022-01-31

As expected, it’s back, on the agenda for the January 31st Planning Commission meeting, this time for R-A, as in probably 2.5-acre instead of 1-acre lots: 6. REZ-2022-03 Windy Hill Subdivision, 7532 Miller Bridge Rd., 0010 022, ~34 ac., E-A to R-A.

I would tell you more, but Lowndes County has not returned the board packet despite having more than the three days the Georgia Open Records Act (GORA) permits for returning such documents. So I’ve included some information provided by the opposition.

[Agenda, Opposition to Miller Bridge Road rezoning]
Agenda, Opposition to Miller Bridge Road rezoning

That’s one of four subdivision rezonings, one in Dasher, the other three in unincorporated Lowndes County. The Miller Bridge Road one is different because it’s still in an aquifer recharge zone, still far outside any appropriate Character Area in the Comprehensive Pland, and it has overwhelming opposition. See this map that opponents tell me was a house-to-house team effort to get people to sign a petition against the rezoning. It shows the parcels owned by the opponents. They’ve got the subject parcel surrounded for miles around. Continue reading

Cancelled: Lowndes County Commission Meetings 2022-01-10

The current top news entry on lowndescounty.com is January 10 & 11, 2022 Commission Meetings Cancelled,

The January 10, 2022 and January 11, 2022, Commission meetings have been cancelled due to the lack of agenda items needing immediate attention.

The calendar entries for the Monday morning Work Session and the Tuesday evening Regular Session are marked “Cancelled”.

[Regular and Work Sessions Cancelled]
Regular and Work Sessions Cancelled

So expect the contentious Miller Bridge Road subdivision that was withdrawn last time to be back with larger lot sizes at the January 24 and 25 Commission meetings.

-jsq

Investigative reporting costs money, for open records requests, copying, web hosting, gasoline, and cameras, and with sufficient funds we can pay students to do further research. You can donate to LAKE today!

Miller Bridge Road subdivision withdrawn, Rocky Ford denied, Tourism reappointed @ LCC 2021-12-14

Update 2022-01-22: Miller Bridge Rezoning back as R-A @ GLPC 2022-01-31.

Update 2022-01-09: Cancelled: Lowndes County Commission Meetings 2022-01-10, so expect the contentious Miller Bridge Road subdivision that was withdrawn last time to be back with larger lot sizes at the January 24 and 25 Commission meetings.

The contentious Miller Bridge Road Rezoning was withdrawn from the December Lowndes County Commission meeting, but the withdrawal letter said it would be back, possibly in January.

The Rocky Ford rezoning from industrial to residential did not pass; although Commissioner Clay Griner voted against and Scottie Orenstein abstained, the other three voted to deny.

They reappointed the incumbent, Rick Williams, to the Valdosta-Lowndes County Conference Center and Tourism Authority, even though Commissioners Demarcus Marshall and Joyce Evans voted for Nick Harden (who did attend the meeting).

Most everything else sailed through. The meeting was very long anyway, because there was only one December Commission meeting, so everything got lumped into one.

[Two rezonings that did not pass]
Two rezonings that did not pass

Below are links to each LAKE video of each agenda item, followed by a LAKE video playlist. See the LAKE videos of the preceding morning’s Work Session and the agenda and board packet, received in response to a LAKE open records request. Two of them, actually, the second request was to get the petition from hundreds of opposing landowners.

See also the preceding Planning Commission agenda, the LAKE videos, and the meeting materials, received in response to LAKE open records requests.

Update 2022-01-03: Withdrawn but will return: subdivision in aquifer recharge zone near Little River, Lowndes County, GA @ LCC 2021-12-14.

Videos: Six rezonings, Tourism Authority appointment, LMIG, Calendar, ULDC, VOCA, VAWA, Opioid, Land Bank Authority, Fire Dept. @ LCC 2021-12-13

Turns out there was a petition that the County Planner “just took … out of this packet for now”, for REZ-2021-28 Windy Hill S/D, 7532 Miller Bridge Road, ~34 acres, E-A to R-1, Community Well & Septic. (WITHDRAWN).

We know this because Commissioner Demarcus Marshall asked. (See 6m:15s). That petition was not returned for the LAKE open records request for the board packet for this County Commission meeting.

County Planner JD Dillard said the petition had been presented to the Planning Commission. The petition also was not returned in response to the LAKE open records request for the Planning Commission packet, even though that response arrived several days after the Planning Commission meeting.

County Chairman Bill Slaughter said they could get that information to the Commissioners before their next meeting. I’m not sure that’s what the Georgia Open Records Act says.

Update 2021-12-27: Here is the petition, received in response to another LAKE open records request. Looks like the county redacted the email addresses.

Lowndes County Planner JD Dillard
County Planner JD Dillard

Below are links to each LAKE video of each agenda item, followed by a LAKE video playlist. Apologies for the very long first video; turns out the county sound feed was not working, so Gretchen had to go back and patch in county sound from another source. See also Continue reading

Packet: Four big + 2 small county rezonings, four Valdosta rezonings, 3 of them CUP @ GLPC 2021-11-29

The entire board packet for the November 2021 Greater Lowndes Planning Commission meeting is on the LAKE website now, received in response to a LAKE open records request.

[Rezonings with LAKE logo]
Rezonings with LAKE logo

For the six county rezonings, there is more in the board packet for the Lowndes County Commission December meetings.

See also Continue reading

Six rezonings, Tourism Authority appointment, LMIG, Calendar, ULDC, VOCA, VAWA, Opioid, Land Bank Authority, Fire Dept. @ LCC 2021-12-13

Withdrawn as R-1 (1-acre lots) from tomorrow’s Lowndes County Commission agenda, but to be resubmitted as R-A (2.5-acre lots):
REZ-2021-28 Windy Hill S/D, 7532 Miller Bridge Road, ~34 acres, E-A to R-1, Community Well & Septic (WITHDRAWN).

At the Planning Commission meeting end of November, staff said it did not match the Comprehensive Plan, and the Planning Commission unanimously recommended denial.

[Rezonings]
Rezonings

However, Planning Commissioner Franklin Bailey said, as he made the motion to disapprove, that he would be comfortable with 2.5-acre lots instead of 1-acre lots. The developer took him up on that idea with a written letter to the County Planner saying they would be back in January to ask for R-A rezoning, which will permit 2.5-acre lots.

Plus staff has dug up a 1999 rezoning nearby for 3-acre lots which could serve as a precedent. Yet almost none of those 3-acre lots have sold in the past two decades, so why is there any need for any more such lots “very deep in the Rural Service Area”?

That withdrawal letter says: Continue reading

An inappropriate rezoning unanimously opposed, but beware return with different acreage @ GLPC 2021-11-29

Update 2021-12-12: Packet: Four big + 2 small county rezonings, four Valdosta rezonings, 3 of them CUP @ GLPC 2021-11-29.

The Greater Lowndes Planning Commission unanimously recommended denial of rezoning for a rezoning on Miller Bridge Road, outside any appropriate character area, but one of them frequently suggested trying 2.5-acre lots instead of 1-acre lots.

Another subdivision, on Rocky Ford Road, which was opposed by the Development Authority, got a split recommendation for denial, with that same Commissioner abstaining.

All the other items got unanimous approval.

One of the rezonings was actually to agricultural so the owner can farm it.

[Two rezonings recommended against]
Two rezonings recommended against

The owners spoke for REZ-2021-28 on Miller Bridge Road, with the usual insistence that everybody wants to live in the north part of the county and you just can’t stop growth and sprawl. Continue reading

Four big + 2 small county rezonings, four Valdosta rezonings, 3 of them CUP @ GLPC 2021-11-29

Update 2021-12-01: Videos: An inappropriate rezoning unanimously opposed, but beware return with different acreage @ GLPC 2021-11-29

There’s been alarm in the northwest part of Lowndes County for a month about the 34-acre Miller Bridge Road rezoning. And there are three more big rezonings on the agenda tonight for the Greater Lowndes Planning Commission, on Rocky Ford Road, Val Tech Road, and Seminole Drive.

Those are Lowndes County cases, plus two more small rezonings.

The four Valdosta cases include one “CUP for very high density MultiFamily residential in C-C zoning” on West Hill Avenue, which sounds like a better idea than more sprawl out into the county.

[Four big rezonings]
Four big rezonings

Below is the agenda plus some maps from the Lowndes County Tax Assessors.

Greater Lowndes Planning Commission
~ Lowndes County ~ City of Valdosta ~ City of Dasher ~
~ City of Hahira ~ City of Lake Park ~ City of Remerton ~
Monday, November 22, 2021 5:30 P.M. Work Session
Monday, November 29, 2021 5:30 P.M. Regular Session
Lowndes County South Health District Administrative Office
325 West Savannah Avenue, Valdosta, Georgia

Continue reading

Videos: Comprehensive Plan, rezonings, tower, Hospital Authority, elections @ LCC 2021-11-09

All the main items breezed by unanimously, including the Comprehensive Plan and the Hospital Authority re-appointment of Ben Copeland, at the Lowndes County Commission Regular Session, November 9, 2021.

The only things taking longer than three minutes were the County Manager’s Report and Citizens Wishing to Be Heard about how the Board of Elections is appointed and funded.

[Comprehensive Plan, Communications Tower, Manager's Report, Electios]
Comprehensive Plan, Communications Tower, Manager’s Report, Electios

Below are LAKE videos of each agenda item with a few notes, followed by a LAKE video playlist. See also the LAKE videos of the previous morning’s Work Session, the agenda and Board packet, and, for the rezonings and the tower, the LAKE videos of the preceding Planning Commission meeting.

For the Comprehensive Plan, see also the LAKE videos of the preceding Comprehensive Plan Update Meeting 2 and the Character Area Maps for it, the Lowndes County Commission Regular Session before that, and the quite lengthy first Comprehensive Plan Public Hearing.

Videos: One Valdosta-Lowndes, Troupville River Camp, Hospital Authority re-appointment, Godfrey rezoning, VAWA staffing @ LCC 2021-11-08

By far the longest item at 33 minutes at the Lowndes County Commission Work Session was a presentation about One Valdosta-Lowndes (OVL).

[OVL River Camp, Hospital Authority appointment, Godfrey rezoning, VAWA staffing]
OVL River Camp, Hospital Authority appointment, Godfrey rezoning, VAWA staffing

Second longest at almost five minutes was 8.e. Request For Cash Match Increase For VAWA ASG Salary Supplement, about the Violence Against Women Act. Third at four minutes was 7.c. REZ-2021-24 Barry Godfrey, Mt. Zion Church Road.

The likely re-appointee to the Hospital Authority did attend.

Everything else got little discussion, including the final approval of the Comprehensive Plan Update.

They voted the following Tuesday evening.

Below are LAKE videos of each agenda item, with a few notes, followed by